The Louisiana Social Pledge

We pledge our allegiance to Louisiana. We will embrace what makes us and our state unique. Louisiana will be recognized as a leader and innovator of the New South. Many great leaders of the future will come from this state. And we will show both the media and politicians that we are smarter than them. We will no longer have our resources exhausted and our people used and left behind. We will work hard and play hard. We will protect each other. We will support each other. We pledge that we will do whatever we can to get these things in motion right now. We will no longer wait for a path to be cleared for us. We will clear the path ourselves. And we ain’t giving up easily. We will socialize in the real world just as well as we do on the internet…in hopes to organize ourselves effectively.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Around the Big Island (Hawaii) in a Day (Louis Toliver Jr)

Aloha! Once you arrived to Hilo, go through the small open airport. There should be palm trees slightly swaying high as if they were overseers of the island. If they are swaying, it should rain soon, but it rains often on the leeward side of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa. Don’t think this day is a bust. Rent an economy size car, leave the airport, and cruise onto Kamehameha Avenue through Hilo’s downtown. Notice how the place gleams with history along the ocean.  Unique shops line the area with different kinds of woodwork, glasswork, and jewelry. Do not be overwhelmed. Instead, find a little native man under 4ft tall, by the name of Kumu. He will have a small dog in a coconut bra. Buy some strawberry papayas from him and only him. Eat them. It’s okay.
Leave Hilo and hop onto Highway 19. Remember not to pick up hitchhikers. It could be the fire goddess, Pele.  Not too far away from Hilo is Rainbow Drive, a huge waterfall that falls 80 feet deep. Several rainbows form throughout the mist of the waterfall’s impact into a large beautiful pool of water. Back on 19, curve along the Pacific taking in the beauty of the Big Island. When the highway goes high along the terrain, you can see the waves crash against the rock. After about four and half songs, you should see Waipio valley down below surrounded by the huge cliffs you are driving on. If you don’t see the valley, then either keep going for another song or turn around and try to find it. Wild mares run along the valley beach all the time leading their offspring to fresh water streams leading into the ocean, full of cool mountain water.
After the valley, the northern town of Waimea is full of green pastures and Hawaiian “cowboys” that tend to the sheep and cattle as you pass a large ranch. In town, there are horseback tours for people and villagers moving about town. It’s easy to hit a horse, so please drive with caution. Possibly, the sky will grow dim and rain will hit the windshield like small needles. This is what I call Seattle-like weather. Eventually, it will begin to get sunny and there should be petroglyphs to your left, or inland. There is about, I don’t know, a million symbols carved into the lava rock. The western side of the island is dry and white sand beaches line the coast to your right along the ocean.
When you arrive in Kona, several people walk the streets from resorts to shops, and from white sand beaches to restaurants. The shallow waters are filled with people and further outward are boats, submarines, and small cruise ships. The white sand beaches mirror the sun’s rays and the resorts are filled with people both local and tourist. Leaving the Kona, the outskirts of town have fishponds. There are manta rays signs. I’ve never seen a manta ray, so I’m not sure they exist. You should definitely be able to spot the local honu or green sea turtle. But turtles may not tickle your fancy in Hawaii (I recommend spending a night to see a transsexual street prostitute turn a few tricks by the ocean).
At this point, your economy car has made it over half way around the island. Heading south, Highway 19 has become Highway 11 after you leave Kona. When you arrive to an area called Ka Lae, where Southpoint Park is located, you are at the southern most part of the United States. There will be only blue, blue ocean between you and Antarctica. If you want to hike left (if you are facing the ocean), there are greensand beaches. The area permits routes to the beaches for four-wheeled vehicles, but economy size rental cars should avoid this area. I also should have told you that early. Enjoy your hike.
Now, head east back on Highway 11. The green/blue contrast will soon be cremated literally. There will not be too much sightseeing in this lesser populated area. This southeast/northeast highway can now be called Volcano Highway as you drive between black rock. Black sand beaches dominate the coast. If you’re brave, when you arrive to the town of Volcano that honestly is just a volcano, you can check out the Kilauea Volcano and its slow weeping tears of lava. It’s active so rolling around when you’re up there isn’t a good idea. You could roll into a pool of lava. It burns. Highway 11 turns back into Highway 19 and you made a full circle back to Hilo. It will be probably pouring with rain as the evening sets. Return your economy car. Take a breath. You’re done. 

BE BOLD, We're Losing Time (Louis Toliver Jr)

Why do you love a woman who just uses you for your money
Loving another foolish man who cries
Tell her you will leave

Why do you continue to let a man bruise your beautiful body
Covering bruises with makeup and lies
Tell him you will leave

We’re losing time loving people who don’t love us

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Sonnet to My Mind (Louis Toliver Jr)

My mind if so vast that Poseidon is jealous of me
My thoughts are the currents to the future
Most of you reason-haters will never be free
Ride my ideas like waves and to me you should suture

If I could date my mind
It would be better than Obama’s
No compromising just adopting ideas like babies each one of a kind
No offense Obama but I prefer my mind to be like my mama’s

I like brain massages from Bill Gates
I process images faster than any hard drive
Don’t be fooled I’m still old enough to appreciate Kathy Bates
Her misery says my mind will be worth millions, dead or alive

Me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me
Me, me, me, me, me, me ,me ,me 

The King: A Story for Children (Louis Toliver Jr)

“Alright, boys! Hold it down!” King Pete beat the jungle gym with a large stick like a gavel. “The Jungle Boys is meeting now!” he climbed the top of the jungle gym and sat on top of them as if he were above a kingdom. In the distance, on the other side of the playground, there was a playhouse, where all the ones The Jungle Boys didn’t speak of spent their time, The Wasteland. The Jungle Boys was an all-exclusive all-boys club that met during morning and afternoon recess. Pete was the eldest second grader of Mrs. Marion’s class at near 9 years old and therefore he felt that gave him leadership of the club. Roll call went as follows:…Andy, Jimmy, Johnny, Jamil, Phil, Justin, Matt, Tommy,  Simms, and Judd…
“Here!” they chanted in unison.
“Alright, first business, The Jungle here is getting too small for the membership. We need to vote on a new location to have our meetings,” King Pete poked out his chest and then looked across the playground. “It’s a big land out there.”
“The Swings!” Andy screamed to get only the first sentence at every meeting. Everyone gave him a funny look, because there wee no such things as swings in their world. “I mean…The Vineyard!”
“I like that idea,” Jimmy added.
“Me too!” Johnny went along with Jimmy.
“The Vineyard!,” Simms cheered, some of the others joining in.
“What’s a vineyard?” Judd asked.
“It’s where there are a bunch of vines and moats,” Justin whispered to Judd.
“But The Courts are bigger,” Matt said. 
“Yes, yes, Matt is right. The Courts (the basketball courts) are bigger. We could all have a big space to ourselves, start territories!” the boys cheered at King Pete’s words.
“But what about The Jungle? What will happen to it? What if the ones we don’t speak of take over The Jungle?” Tommy wasn’t sold on change easily.
Tommy always asked difficult questions and King Pete wondered if Tommy secretly wanted to be leader, “Hmmm, well The Jungle will now be a territory of ours. This is the beginning and we must protect it!”
“I like that idea,” Jimmy added.
“Me too!” Johnny went along with Jimmy.
“Protect The Jungle!” Simms cheered, some of the others joining in.
“But how can we live in The Jungle and The Courts at the same time?” Tommy asked?

Meanwhile… at The Wasteland.

This is where Jessie spent most of her time wishing she was playing with the boys and she wished she was a part of their secret club that wasn’t really a secret. Jessie wanted to be a Jungle Boy but, as always, she was stuck with Bart, who wasn’t really interested in the club anyway. They joined the girls at recess playing House or Red Rover, because they were not allowed to join The Jungle Boys.
“That’s it! I want to go over there. Come with me Bart,” Jessie jumped off the ground away form the imaginary diner table where she always played the husband, a unanimous decision by all the girls and Bart. She grabbed Bart by the arm and dragged him away from playing the brother who was interested in table decorations, family prayers, and helping his sisters with their dance routines.
“I don’t want to go!” Bart dug his heels in the ground as Jessie pulled him. “We were about to have dinner! A lasagna, which I helped mom make!”
“Come on! I don’t like secrets kept from me. They will let us join,” Jessie marched.
“I said I don’t want to join! They play on those dirty bars!” Bart would not stop resisting.

…Back at The Jungle.

            “Are we still going to be The Jungle Boys?” Judd asked. “Are we going to be The Court Boys?”
            “That’s a stupid question,” Jimmy added
            “Yeah, yeah,” Johnny went along with Jimmy.
            “Forever The Jungle Boys!” Simms cheered then looked at Judd, “You’re stupid, Judd!”
            “That’s actually a good question,” Tommy suggested. “We can’t be the Jungle Boys living at The Courts.”
            “Fine. We will be called The Jungle-Court Boys,” King Pete slammed down the stick hard because he wanted to move along. “That ends that. We move tomorrow and Jamil and Phil will guard The Jungle because they are the youngest.”
            Jessie marched up the to jungle gym with Bart standing away uninterested, “I want to speak to your leader!”
            The ones we don’t speak of!” the chorus of boys panicked.
            “What do you want boyish girl and girly boy?” King Pete yelled from the top of The Jungle. “You don’t fit in here.”
            “I want to be a Jungle Boy,” Jessie demanded.
            Judd began laughing hysterically, “But you’re not a boy! That’s funny!” He kept laughing for a long time, one of those long awkward laughs when no one else is laughing. “She’s not a boy, you see!” He laughed more.
            “You and him cannot join. Our rules,” King Pete grinned.
            “I don’t care about your stupid secret club. I’m going to play Red Rover,” Bart left.
            “Well, then I challenge you!” Jessie swelled out her chest to Pete.
            All the boys where silent. Pete couldn’t believe this girl challenged him. He had to do something. “Ha, how could you possibly challenge me?” King Pete climbed down from. The Jungle and stood in front of Jessie, who was the same height as him but slightly broader.
            “We play King at The Pit.”
            “Pit?” Judd’s eyebrows went up.
            “The balance beams, dummy!” Justin whispered.
            “I’m not going to duel a girl at The Pit,” King Pete laughed, but he was nervous at the possibility of losing power.
            “Oh, you scared?” Jessie pushed Pete with a finger.
            The boys were shocked. They looked for Pete to make his move. “I will not challenge a girl to a duel. It’s pointless.”
            “But she challenged you,” Matt pointed out.
            “So?” Pete huffed.
            “I think she’s boy enough to challenger you.” Tommy also pointed out.
“I like that idea,” Jimmy added.
“Me too!” Johnny went along with Jimmy.
“Duel!,” Simms cheered, some of the others joining in. They were turning against Pete.

                                                And so…to The Pit.

Jessie took her position at one end and Pete at the other.
Balancing themselves, they moved slowly towards each other.
Jessie pushed Pete and he almost lost balance.
He regained himself and then lunged at Jessie who jerked a bit.
Pete lunged at her again.
This time she grabbed him by the skull
And pushed him backward off The Pit.
Pete fell onto his back.
It knocked the wind out of him causing him to cry.

            The boys laughed. Pete cried off to tell Mrs. Marion. Jessie didn’t care for she had succeeded and she pumped her fist like she had just won a gladiator battle, “I’m king! I’m King of the Jungle Boys!”
The boys all looked at each other: Andy, Jimmy, Johnny, Jamil, Phil, Justin, Matt, Tommy, Simms, and Judd…
            “King Jessie!” Simms cheered and ALL the others joined impressed by Jessie’s strength.
            “Now, let us go to The Wasteland and make peace with girls (formerly known as the ones The Jungle Boys didn’t speak of),” Jessie led a line. “We will expand our land beyond The Jungle and The Courts under my rule.”

Friday, January 25, 2013

Winter Dragons (Jordan James Levers-Lafayette, LA)

We Winter Dragons ensnared in deceiving chain-link vines, fire within our veins.
The whole hostile world is beset by cold, yet soon to go up in flames.
Death before rebirth written in rhyming verse, look between the lines.
Bringing Strength out of weakness, Confidence out of doubt
Light in the darkest of times.
Our art a metaphor for where we are, our canvases are readied and primed.
We paint with reckless passions laid bare, read into our lyrical designs.

Unseen Mannequin (Spencer Black-Lafayette, LA)

In this old costume store, a shrine of a mannequin with old fashioned clothing stands hidden in the very back, away from anyone who might show interest. At one point in time this mannequin might have been beautiful but who would know? White spots showing from underneath the white painted skin, black marks all over the face maybe from overuse. Maybe it's a shrine because it's more realistic and unique of its kind with the worn lipsticked lips and fading eyes.

Those mannequins seen in the real stores, dressed with their custom designs, the whatever kids are interested in, the whatever is more dessert for the eyes – they just don't know. This older mannequin seems to be wiser than that especially with its collection of different sparkling, red, Dorothy shoes below it.

The mannequin must believe there is no place like home. And maybe this is not its home. It could be that this mannequin knows that home is the most real place it can be. Home is the only time it can be itself. But this mannequin will not complain or hide underneath the soupy, sticky mounds of makeup just to be accepted in the outside world. So it is placed in the very back of an old costume store.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Sonnet to My Heart (Louis Toliver Jr)

Oh America, my heart pumps love for you
But, of course, my heart bleeds for my own self more
Often I cry at the sight of anything blue
And to the thought of those thinking I’m just a manwhore

I also think of starving families, parents with no time for their kids
Kids abused at home, mainly by society
One that votes its rights away for more reality TV bids
Okay America, I get why you reject sobriety

I wear my heart on my sleeve and my back
This is my puzzle to solve, just like “why I don’t have tits?”
And why I can’t afford to buy a vowel from Pat Sajak
When my heart is as beautiful as Vanna White’s shaved armpits

Oh America, if your heart was as big as mine
You’d make it your profile pic on e-harmony online

Dad (Annette Redmond Walters-Lafayette, LA)

As a child I held you in awe.

I watched from your shadow the esteem you held my mother in and the romance in her eyes.

From my sensitive perspective you were always larger than life, a man beyond 
my comprehension.

Your presence was constant, our role as your family never questioned.

From my very first memory, you were there and we belonged to you.

As I grew through adolescence, I drifted from your shadow to a corner of my own and 
confusion overwhelmed me.

I cannot bear to think of how much of your character I missed out on knowing during those 
dark years

and despite my rebellion, still I saw my mother glow and I knew that you were good and 
eventually admitted that you were right.

As a young adult I quietly asked admittance back into your life and you rejoiced. Again, a man 
beyond my comprehension.

I worked hard to get close to you from that time on and never did you let me down.

Your response made me want to be a better person, even a rational one.

And the prouder I made you the more excited I became.

With the birth of my son, I saw a different man in you.

No longer a giant in my midst, you became the man of joy, love, and devotion my mom had
always known you to be.

I saw a gentleness in you, a carefree absolution that left me in a different kind of awe.

I allowed myself to feel secure with you and as usual you never let me down.

When we last spoke, you told me how much you loved me and I knew you were saying 

And although I was crumbling inside, I told you of the honor I felt for you, the admiration I held you in and the hope that my son would grow to know it too. Your last words to me were "Thank 

I found it incredulous that you should be thanking me because I would not be who I am without 

You showed me what a man was meant to be, a selfless father, devoted husband, adoring 
grandfather, and a strong and brilliant presence.

You are the one I should be thanking. I never asked to be rescued, never dreamed I'd be worthy 
and you saved me anyway.

Daddy, you are the strength of my heart. You made it whole and because of you, I will never 
give up. I will never ever give up.

Shout Out to Mystery (Katherine Stelly Watson-Lafayette, La) "

Here's to the mystery man sitting in the corner
I saw him looking blindly
Not knowing I was staring from the opposite direction

He couldn't notice me
I was bound by the bar stool under the bleak light
No attention was on me except for the swirling smoke

Here's to the booth and the barstool

Here's to the mystery of our relationship
Starting off as oglers
then to friends
then to committed contestants in the game of barflying

Here's to the booth and the barstool

Here's to the mystery of The Bulldog
How I found my husband there
Well, that's a miracle

Here's to the mystery of love and commitment

Here's to the booth and the bar stool
Where roaming eyes became a mysterious matrimony and a solved case of love.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Treasure Chest (Annette Redmond Walters-Lafayette, La)

An outcast maiden’s virtues
a witch’s jade upon my breast
a darkness among church pews
locked inside my treasure chest

Little candy apple heart
lost and improperly dressed
my hidden core pulled apart
locked inside my treasure chest

A demon’s surging black blood
a defined and hidden quest
a twisted, drooping rose bud
locked inside my treasure chest

A blurry vision of love
tucked away in a warm nest
I’m yours, a captured white dove
locked inside my treasure chest

Emotional Appeal (Taylor Coen-Lafayette, LA)

A path of destruction.
A cloud of delusion.
Patching up the whole.
The strength of every goal.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Lover's Leap (Lynda Frese-Lafayette, LA)

Too Bright (Chris S. Hayes, MD-Lafayette,LA)

Too bright she burns, a fragment of the fire
That flames within her eyes will immolate
The unsuspecting subject of her ire,
Reducing him to ash, a dreadful fate.

And so she shines, her brilliance a mere mask
While cowards walk around her, daring not,
Their courage insufficient to the task
Of walking though her fiery onslaught.

Until he comes, inured to pain and death,
Oblivious to all but her bright blaze,
And braves destruction in a single breath
To be incinerated by her gaze.

To ash they both are rendered by the sight
But flare again to fiery flame, too bright.

Monday, January 21, 2013

F.R.E.N.E.M.Y. (Louis Toliver Jr-Swartz, LA))

For their environment says they’re competing
Really one is aware of that and the other is not
Even though they are both the same
Nevertheless one wants the other out
Endless secrets are ammunition for each other
Many ways to get underneath each other’s skin
Yet they choose slyly to care for each other

Friday, January 18, 2013

Follow Close (Louis Toliver Jr)

Follow close behind me

Follow close enough to feel me

Last time the house was empty

I gave myself to you inside the night

No need to take the sun’s advice

Come after the moonlight waves

Inside I wait by the stairs

 My love still built strong and sturdy

So follow close behind me

And let me lead you to the bedroom

Thursday, January 17, 2013

We Can (Louis Toliver Jr)

When they say we can’t but we can: happiness encapsulated in time: every good road taken has been taken: people who were far away remain close: Thanksgiving diner served every Sunday: pulses of fabric knitted in unison: music stretched along the horizon: directions mended by similar scars: bolted fingers bonded by leaves: love built in a rock formation: he can: she can: they can: I can: you can: we can…

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Absent Sun (Louis Toliver Jr)

The woods distorted our reality and footed dusty trails muddled the way. Passioned trees undiscovered. Sneaking through the bushes like fleas fleeting. Cruel, smart hidden insects. Moving beyond rock beds into graveyards. Old metal molded, fearless dark, absent sun. Conquered woods play away from rigid home, a place of protection enclosing the imagination expanding the closeness between us. We were then children, we are still now. Footprints remain in the woods…

Monday, January 14, 2013

Winter Came, Spring Went, But We're Still Here (Louis Toliver Jr)

When Winter came, they were tucked under a blanket by the fireplace, daily. They looked out of the window into the cold land, imagining what their lives once were. Their cabin was hidden under white as was the ground and trees. The air in the woods was thick. One had to breathe harder to get a little oxygen. There was hardly anyone or anything in the snow. Occasionally during the day, some kids sledding would slip by in the distance; though never close enough to speak. The birds and squirrels were gone. The days were short, and the nights long. At night, the entire land felt like a dark cave. But her wish was for them to spend time where they spent their honeymoon. The last thing he wanted was for her to be cold. So, he promised, this winter, their last winter, would be a warm winter in spite of the cold gusts that came into the cabin stinging their skin.
When she fell asleep, he leaned into kiss her lips and hoped the warmth of the kiss went from her lips into her blood. He always thought he would be the one to die first, that he would die young. But here she was, instead, deep in his arms dying from something he didn’t understand. It was autumn when they found out. For a moment, through all the cold in their lives, he felt how alive she was in this season. He was with her. He stretched his arm around her watching her breathe slowly. He met his hand with her hand and the golden ring they each wore locked together in their hands’ embrace. It would be the just the two of them until the end. The end was something he didn’t want, but he knew it was coming. All he could think about was how he hated the cold, how much he wished winter had never come, at least, not right now. He held her tightly.


When Spring went, the weather was perfect, but she was gone. All the windows in the cabin were open and it had been nearly two months since he last used the fireplace.  He had cleaned out most of their belongings. The damp woods were busy and he tried hard to let it distract his loneliness. He knew others were around because the breezes often carried their voices. The roof was wet from the morning rain and raindrops were still falling from the gutter to the ground. It was hard, but remembering her rejuvenated his spirit. He stepped outside the cabin and looked around as if it were for the first time. The For Sale sign was staked into the green grass in front of the walnut-wooded cabin. A couple of vines had grown from a nearby tree and found themselves twisted around the base of the sign. He had been here with her and her presence still warmed him. He had no regrets.
He looked down at his golden ring and he held it upward towards the sun, the ring glistened and seemed to radiate the land around him. The trees and grass looked greener. The end had come, but he was still here. The area seemed vast and open. He felt his lungs full of air. Life was pulsing around him. He then held both rings in the palm of his hand. He took a piece of string and put the two rings on it, together. He tied a knot making a necklace and put it around his neck. A happy union, he wore proudly. It had taken some time, but he had finally worked up the courage to leave. Summer was whispering his ear. The whistling of the birds sent a happy beat into his spirit and this beat would help him find a new beginning. All he could think about was how much he loved the Spring, how much he needed it, at least, right now. He grabbed the rings tightly in one had and held them close to his chest.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

10 Easy Rules to Survive a Greyhound Bus Trip (Louis Toliver Jr)

1.    Make sure you have a friend or relative drop you off that will be responsible enough to remember to pick you up when you get back. (I’ll tell you why later).
2.     Don’t arrive any earlier than 10 minutes before your bus leaves. At 11 minutes you may have a panic attack and leave.
3.    Walk into the bus station and go to the front desk. Yes, there will be someone there and the line won’t necessarily be long, but the person standing there will probably be in a heated conversation about some soap opera. DON’T INTERRUPT. The “usually” female clerk will at some point (most you may wait is 10 mintues) laugh hysterically and slap her hand on the counter exposing her long, oddly beautiful, fingernails. If you interrupt, she may slit your neck (Joking….kinda).
4.    The “usually” female clerk will ask for your tickets. DON’T TEAR ANY TICKETS YOURSELF. I thought I was helping the clerk and tore off my first ticket. It took me, let’s say, 10 seconds, to tear the first ticket and she watched slightly. After I tore the ticket, she goes, “Oooh, you’re not supposed to do that! You may not be able to get on the bus now.” And if this happens, you, like me, will be thinking in your head, “Why did that bitch stand there an let me tear that ticket?” DON’T SAY THIS TO HER THOUGH. Throat slit, remember?
5.     If this took 10 minutes, your bus should be loading at your terminal, not leaving on time, of course. This is also helpful to avoid having to realize you’re about to get on a greyhound bus with a multi-ethnic version of the cast Roseanne.
6.    You will meet your bus driver. If you are dressed nicely, he will give you a suspicious look. So, I encourage bandanas, piercings, baggy jeans, chains….normal stuff like that. No suits or kapri pants.
7.    When you get on the bus….you kinda want to be in the middle of the pack. If you go first and take a window seat, it is likely either a woman with a lot of bags or a clown (who kinda looks like John Goodman) that just left a strip joint will sit next to you. If you go last, you will have to choose between someone who just got down doing a triple shift at Waffle House or an unaware farter. Neither are friendly looking.
8.    While the bus is in motion, do not engage directly in conversation immediately with anyone. Play it cool.  If you managed to sit by yourself, PLEASE PUT A BAG NEXT TO YOU. There is a 91% chance there is a middle-aged woman sitting across from you that has a doll buckled in next to her. She could reach over and grab you while your sleeping and ask, “Do I know you?” Snatch a way from her and yell, “No!” She will leave you alone.
9.    When you arrive to either your destination or next station. You better make sure you have all your belongs. Let’s say you leave your cell phone on your seat. You just screwed yourself. But for my hard workers out there, here’s what you do. Once, you realize that you have left your phone, go to the bus driver who should still be standing by the bus with the door closed. Tell him that you left your cell phone on the bus. He will laugh and say, “Ha, you can kiss that shit goodbye!” DON’T GET ANGRY. Give him a sad face. He will then tell you to go tell the guys getting your bags off the bus. Yep, this doesn’t help. The bag guys will tell you to go into the station and tell a clerk at the desk. Yep, this time you have to wait in a long line for some reason. After 30 minutes to an hour, you will reach the person at the counter. You will spend time explaining your situation. She will respond, “Why the hell he told you to come up here? Go tell him to let you on that bus and get your phone!” When you return to the bus. The driver will be sitting on the bus with the door closed this time. He will open the door. You tell him that you were told he has to let you on his bus. He will shake his head. Let you on. You will find your phone wedged behind the seat. Play it cool. Walk past the bus driver. He will ask you if you found the phone. Smile lightly and say, “Yes.” He will grunt, as if to say, “Lucky fool.” But you won, so fuck him. Get your bags and leave.
10. Whether you’re arriving from your destination or returning. If you do not have that trustworthy person waiting for you at the bus station as I suggested in rule number 1, your baggage will be stolen within 15 mintues if you are in a large city, or if you are in a rural area, your underwear will be missing from your bags. But you got your cell phone. Winning.

(Note: These rules are applicable 14% of the time.)